Prepared for the 7th War Loan, 1945.
Ken Smith sez: This World War II film operates on a number of very strange conceptual levels. A caucasian actor -- made to look Japanese -- sits behind a desk and tells us that Americans have many misconceptions about the Japanese people (for example, that a Japanese actor would willingly play this role). "We don't have big teeth and thick glasses," he hisses through his taped-back cheeks. He then proceeds to show us what Japan and the Japanese are REALLY like.
"You think you can defeat us by wiping out a few, inexpensive lives," he snickers. "We are not like you!" As we are shown what the narrator claims is captured Japanese war footage, we are told that that the Japanese people are brutally "realistic," and willing to sacrifice everything for their ultimate goal -- "to win the war."
The narrator mocks Americans as being too soft -- a nation of dreamers. "We think you're stupid!" he snorts. "You can destroy Japan's cities with your bombs, but you cannot destroy its heart!"
Were the producers of this film trying to create an American version of Japanese propaganda? Or were they told to create something that would justify (at least in the public's mind) America's anticipated bloody invasion of Japan? Whatever its makers' intentions, My Japan stands as a unique -- and decidedly racist -- film.
My Japan, one of the most unusual documentary films ever made, dares to question America's invincibility. But I wonder whether in fact it's the unheralded first film of the atomic age. Is it too far out to imagine that its real purpose was to desensitize Americans to the horrors of the A-bomb? By citing American weaknesses and vulnerabilities and seeming to praise Japanese patriotism, strength and resolve, it challenges Americans to support a strategy of total war. Its stealthy assertion: that the Japanese military machine will not be broken without an unprecedented effort. It supports this assertion by presenting highly charged and emotional images with an bogus "insider" narration that is at once deceptive and inflammatory.
My Japan is constructed largely from newsreel film, combat photography and captured Japanese images. To most of us today, it all looks pretty much like old black-and-white stock footage. What we don't remember is the power that many of its images used to carry in the public mind. During World War II, images of the Japanese siege of Nanking, China were often used to inflame anti-Japanese passions. Shots of the attack on Pearl Harbor fulfilled the same function; at the war's outset they were embargoed by American authorities, who feared the consequences of showing images of an America caught unawares and defeated. When it later became possible to recontextualize Pearl Harbor as a focus of anger and popular vengeance, the shots were seen over and over again. Unlike many other World War II propaganda films, My Japan shows actual atrocities -- executions, beheaded heads and bodies, the stumps of severed limbs. The mobilization of all of these inflammatory images, and more, supports the idea that this film advocates total war against Japan.
"So...you are the enemy...". How many films begin so provocatively? War creates, and then is sustained by, two levels of enemies. One, the actual military opponent on the battlefield, constructs itself. The other level of enemy, the dehumanized "Other," is a creation of our own minds, often aided by propaganda. Constructing an enemy is a sophisticated effort that employs crude tactics: ignorance, oversimplification, and simplistic appeals to patriotism. And patriotism itself often draws strength from the existence of a constructed enemy. Wartime media show the pervasiveness of this process; the evidence is on this disc in the Archives section under "Constructing an Enemy." Advertisements similar to those shown in that supplement were deemed too sensitive to include in Life magazine's recent reprints of some 1945 issues. A review of Gulf War news coverage will show, however, that this process is still in fashion.
It's understandable, whether or not justifiable, that warring nations divide the world into allies and enemies. But the "enemy" as pictured in My Japan is more than simply an opposing army. "You cannot destroy Japan," says the narrator in his ersatz accent, "because you cannot destroy the Japanese people." And the Japanese people are, in the film's twisted way, pictured as an inhuman race, without compassion, and described as tireless, fanatical workers who lack the desire and capacity for leisure and enjoyment. "They work longer hours than you do, twice as long, quite often. Why not? They're not working for the clock. They're working to win the war." But these characterizations of an enemy are not based on any kind of reality. Rather, they are created in relation to some supposed American weaknesses: "How we suffer when you do not have a full tank of gasoline. How devastated we are at the sight of you jammed into pleasure trains. How we tremble when you have to wait to get into the movies, restaurants and nightclubs....You are a nation of bargain-hunters." Our anger at finding ourselves too materialistic and selfish is invoked so that it can be turned against the enemy of the moment.
My Japan adopts the pretense that the "Japanese" narrator is confiding in us, telling us secrets, exposing the true nature of his society. "Captured Japanese film" is invoked, furthering the "insider" feeling. It pretends to be a critique of popular consciousness, to deconstruct a myth. "How sad to disillusion you...and how easy, easy because you do not know the Japanese, you only think you do, and you're wrong."
"We are Japan -- a mountain, a spiderweb, a flame that feeds on hate of you." My Japan charges the Japanese with atrocious conduct, but is itself charged with viciousness and brutality, both in the images it presents and in the way it's edited. Its producers (whose identities are unknown) were skilled polemicists, geniuses who, in their own way, were as evilly minded as the killers represented in the footage.
Ultimately, My Japan sets the stage for total war. It implies that nothing less will be sufficient to defeat an enemy like Japan. And this is the argument that was invoked to support the decision to drop the atomic bomb; an argument that resurfaced in summer 1995 around an exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution recalling the bomber Enola Gay. We cannot know whether My Japan's producers were privy to the secrets of the Manhattan Project, but we can assert that propagandists bear as much responsibility as generals.
[The War Finance Division of the U.S. Treasury Department presents:]
[The Japanese viewpoint . . . Japanese doctrine . . . with captured Japanese film. This is the way the enemy looks at the war . . . thinks it . . . fights it . . . to him, this is - ]
[My Japan. bonsai gong gongs Orientalism main titles graphic design typography mythology racism makeup racial stereotypes Caucasians Asian Americans accents flowers]
"So, you are the enemy. Ha ha.
Oh, I am not supposed to laugh. You've heard that the Japanese do not show their feelings. Nor do I have big teeth and thick glasses. How sad to disillusion you and how easy. Easy because you do not know the Japanese. You only think you do and you're wrong. Let me show you how wrong you are.
This is Japan. My Japan. It is lovely. [aerials aerial scenes farms terraces fields agriculture scenics peasants rice paddies oxen animals hats umbrellas water windmills raking boats paddling rowing]
Here breezes soft and fragrant whisper the story of the moon goddess to feathery little pine trees. Here dainty bridges hover over tiny streams like hummingbirds over flowers. [temples shrines gardens]
Here sacred fish ripple pools of water, cold and clear as winter sunshine. [carp goldfish women traditional costumes traditional dress geishas smiling gender roles kimonos feeding fish]
Here, too, stands Fujiyama - a holy mountain reaching down to the boiling center of the Earth and soaring up to touch the stars commanding us to fulfill our certain destiny to rule." [Mount Fujiyama volcanoes women hairdos waves sea oceans snow wind ridges bubbles geothermal energy heat waves beaches ocean Manifest Destiny]
Banzai. Banzai. Banzai." [American flags desecration Stars and Stripes flags inflammatory images Japanese flags cheering Japanese soldiers Imperial Japanese Army]
"Yes, my Japan is lovely is it not? This, too, is my Japan. The frame around the picture - the hard backbone of the graceful bamboo tree. [boats water lilies cherry blossoms cities streets lanes signs stores lanterns bridges cities buildings]
Flimsy buildings made of paper and wood. One vast torch waiting to burn at the drop of an incendiary bomb? Look again. Neither fire nor earthquake can level our cities. You're finding that out, are you not? [railroads trains glass windows modernism modern architecture]
Nor do your bombings particularly impress us. London was bombed. Did England die? Tokyo, Osaka, Yokohama - drop your bombs. You cannot destroy Japan by turning cities into blackened rubble, by wiping out a few inexpensive lives. You're finding that out, too, are you not? [aerials bombardment rubble damage explosions war fires bombers airplanes wreckage]
You cannot destroy Japan because you cannot destroy its heart - the Japanese people. [Constructivism avant-garde photography bridges railroads trolleys trolley cars streetcars cities wipes masses crowds soldiers women children peasants farmers]
You say you can and the methods you propose amuse us. You say you can destroy us by starving us out. You forget that we are not like you. We have no soft bellies crying for beefsteaks and butter and candy. We live well on simple food, easy to get. Starve us? It is easier to starve a fish in the ocean. [rice paddies Great Buddha Buddhism Kamakura Shrines ships harbors shipping agriculture fields food production plowing oxen]
You say you can destroy us by making sacrifices. How we suffer when you do not have a full tank of gasoline. How devastated we are at the sight of you jammed into pleasure trains. How we tremble when you have to wait to get into movies, restaurants, nightclubs. Sacrifices? What a delightful and foolish sense of humor you have. [irony Americana consumerism materialism money spoiled department stores clothing models mannikins shopping spending waste wasting profligacy Reno, Nevada main streets Jockeys Ball banners automobiles wealth richness affluence parking lots abundance Pennsylvania Station, New York City railroads travelers leisure recreation theaters bars taverns drinks alcohol bartenders gambling wheel of fortune wheels of fortune games of chance shaking cocktails martinis]
Or do you really take yourself seriously? We don't. We think you're stupid - an admirable quality for an enemy to have. [Miami Beach, Florida beaches vacations lounging]
You say you can destroy us by outworking us. Ha ha. You must forgive me. This is one of the most amusing ideas of all. [logging factories industry smokestacks chemical industry tanks pipes smoke molten steel industry pigs girders rolling mills ladles sparks pouring]
You have not met our workers, have you? Meet them now and see why I laugh. [Made in Japan automobile industry cars manufacturing exports assembly lines women workers war mobilization war effort]
They work longer hours than you do - twice as long quite often. Why not? They're not working by the clock. They're working to win the war. [welding sparks goggles tanks]
They do not make as much money as you do. Well, they are not working to make money, they are working to win war. They work every day of every week. Is this so strange? They are not working to get days off, they are working to win the war. [soldiers artillery manufacturing industry workers agriculture farmers bombs armaments arms industry]
And they stand for hours in long lines to buy these. Japanese war bonds. Turn them in later? Again, you show your stupidity by assuming that we are like you. We hold our bonds to win the war. [patriotism]
You say you can destroy us by outfighting us. You cannot. You cannot outfight us because the path ahead of you lies straight up the steep and rocky mountain of Japan and it is slippery with blood - your blood. [statues sculpture public art war memorials smoke relief maps Japan geography waves seas seacoasts coastlines]
You are a nation of bargain hunters. You will not be willing to pay the full price of victory: in pain, in work, in money, in lives. [war deaths casualties injuries]
Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima - you boast of them as major victories; to you they are. To us they are minor defeats - the loss of island outposts. [shelling bullets audio explosions invasions charges beachheads Pacific War combat fighting]
You Americans are fond of saying 'look at the score.' Very well, look at it. You sent your finest troops against these outposts. They died by the thousands. Here they are massacred, slaughtered. [fires flamethrowers combat danger tanks shooting killing rifles death flames]
But you took the islands, you say. Yes, we expected you to. That is why we garrisoned them with second-rate troops. The best of your lives for the worst of ours. We, too, know a thing or two about bargains. [surrendering surrenders prisoners of war prisoners-of-war POWs]
You have not yet faced the best of our armies. You have faced only ten percent of our worst. Our first-line fighters, millions of them, wait for you on battlegrounds of our own choosing - wait across vast waters which thin out your supply lines and weaken your fighting strength before you even reach us. [military parades soldiers reviewing troops troops on review commanders generals officers marching rifles bayonets uniforms]
They wait in my Japan, in China, in Burma. In all the other half of the world - our half. And they laugh at you because you are so wrong about them. [animation globes rising sun sentries]
They have reached full strength, you say. There are no more replacements. Listen well. More men, many more, enter our armies every day, month in and month out, than we lose in casualties. [basic training cadets youth teenagers soldiers students military training]
They are ignorant little savages you say. Ignorant? Ninety percent of our armies can read and write. Can you say the same for your own? [ship models teachers classes students studying pointers blackboards chalkboards literacy]
Little? Whole divisions of our first-line fighters, our real army, are big men - the kind you describe as six-footers. Savages? No, merely realists, who face facts. [soldiers marching parades flags]
It is a fact that the strong rule the weak, so we rule the weak. It is a fact that the strong remain strong only if they exercise their strength. So we exercise our strength. [bombing Japanese war atrocities Shanghai, China Chinese people victims displaced persons bombing refugees exercises rhythmic mass exercises physical conditioning flags children shootings executions prisoners capital punishment killing]
It is a fact that the lower the birth rate among the weak, the less potential danger for us in the future. So we control the birthrate. It is a fact that prisoners taken become a liability, after they are drained dry of useful information. So we either transform the liability into an asset - labor for our rice fields and factories - or we write off the liability completely. [children dead babies dead bodies Japanese war atrocities prisoners of war POWs slave labor dead bodies corpses cadavers inflammatory images severed heads decapitation]
For further details you might speak to those of you who were so long our guests in the Philippines - those who still live. [prisoners of war POWs death march of Bataan amputation amputees stumps severed limbs]
It is a fact that human lives are cheap. Unlike you, we have no cowardly illusions about their value, so we spend lives freely - yours and ours. Freely did I say? I am too modest - lavishly is more accurate. [cynicism wounded casualties stretchers surgery surgeons operating rooms hospitals wounds artillery cannons corpses dead bodies killing death]
I refer you to what my Japan told you early in the war. We are prepared to spend ten million lives to defeat you. How many are you willing to spend?
Think well before you answer, and remember what you paid to dig a few thousand of us out of caves on Iwo Jima - only a few thousand. And there are seventy million of us left waiting for you - seventy million who have planned for decades to destroy you, who await eagerly and passionately the sacred honor of dying to halt you, who will stop at nothing, nothing to crush you. Seventy million people, if you will, to be dug out of caves. [animation rally rallies waving fanaticism flags nationalism combat islands maps Japan geopolitics casualties warnings total war wipes patriotism]
Japanese caves? You give no one but yourselves credit for the ability to hold aces up the sleeves, do you? There are caves in China - a China so near to us; a China we control. [waves coastlines oceans water seas seacoasts]
Should you edge uncomfortably close to our home island, it would be simple to move across the narrow sea of Japan, would it not? A move of only a hundred-odd miles. [maps geography Manchuria China]
Already we have much of our industry there. And then, imagine, if you have the nerve, what it would be to dig seventy million of us out of buildings, gullies, caves, mountains in a country as large as your own. [marching troops]
Imagine even trying to pursue us into such a vast spider web. You have seen a fly trapped and attacked by the spider. Come close and you will die in the same way - bled white. [tanks]
No, we have not even begun to hurt you, nor you us. Our war has not even started. We know this because we know the heart of Japan. You do not.
We are not Germany - a walnut easily eaten once the shell is cracked. We are Japan. A mountain, a spider web, a flame that feeds on hate of you. Let the game begin. We gamble only once for all time and the stakes are all or nothing. [animation spider web Satan soldiers salutes saluting tentacles globes tendrils Pearl Harbor inflammatory images burning ships destruction bombardiers bombing bombs bombers]
Perhaps I disturb you with my harsh picture of what lies ahead. So feast instead on this, the beauty of my Japan. [Mount Fujiyama mountains scenics]
It is more to your taste for a world of make-believe rather than one of realities. No, I must not disturb you. I must not awaken you. Your dreaming is pleasant and useful to us. For you dream of victory rather than work for it. You talk total war rather than fight one. You smugly expect peace at bargain rates instead of on our terms. [scenics beauty shots lakes rivers water trees nature bridges temples shrines women geishas]
By all means come to my Japan if you dare. And welcome, it is beautiful here, as beautiful as the sight of your blood on our bayonets. [water reflections smiling soldiers menace jeopardy danger Japanese characters]
[Remember - what you have just seen and heard is what the Japanese believe . . . .]
[Buy war bonds. The mighty seventh 7th war loan.]
[Produced for the War Finance Division, U.S. Treasury Department. The End.]
Subject: No long reviews needed
Subject: "My Japan" obsolete after atom bomb
Subject: We were at WAR!
Subject: Good propaganda film, we were at war.
Subject: Fantastic window into American history...
Subject: Both sides guilty
Subject: bad film
Subject: Sociological Document
Subject: my japan sells war bonds
Subject: I feel sorry for anyone who buys into this garbage..
This film is not a cognitive & freethinking being, with it's own thoughts, opinions, and ideology/ies. But, it is very much a representative of the hatred that it spews forth... It in principle is the exact same thing as the confederate flag! How anyone can believe, and furthermore express, some developmentally stunted, politically and socially ignorant, bloated and putrid bag of hot air is something that never ceases to amaze me...
Those that say that this film is not racist express their own form of racism as they defend this piece of pro-racist, pro-xenophobic, propaganda. I can perhaps not recommend highly enough that anyone with such a point of view do a gut check on their sense of right and wrong. If you find that you have none, or if you find that it is so warped that it is beyond redemption, then it is unfortunately apparent that you should cut off and/or out your sexual organs so that you will not contaminate the rest of the human race; it just IS the right thing to do!
And for cryin' out loud, do it right, use a chainsaw!!
Subject: A lesser known historical sidebar
Concurrently, the Japanese counter-invasion plan, "Operation Ketsugo," called for an organized homeland army of seven million, supported by as many as twelve million partially trained but equally impassioned civilian milita forces. Of these almost twenty million Japanese, four million were positioned in well prepared defensive positions within sixty miles of the selected invasion beaches of southern Kyushu. All in all, a fearsome force.
American casuality estimates covering the initial invasion and one month thereafter ranged from a little less than 200,000 to a high of one million with the accepted consensus being approximately 600,000. Fatality estimates were placed at twenty percent of all of these totals.
Without assurance of nuclear success, what new weapon might the Americans employ to oversome the expected scope of Japanese defense? The answer, certainly never well advertised, lie in chemical agents. Quite obviously, in mid 1945 the 1916-1917 agony of gas warfare at Passchendale and Ypres remained a hideous memory to the populations of all the Allied nations. Nevertheless, in secrecy accelerated production of VX, Serin and other nerve agents commenced and a vast inventory of the less deadly sulfur mustard gases was readied for deployment.
The unexpected end of hostilities posed a significant disposal problem for these chemical agents. An immediate destruction effort was complicated by the onset of the Cold War which suggested there may ultimately be a new enemy for their use. The bombs, miles, shells and rockets containing the gaseous horrors went into protected bunkers on far off Johnston Island and several remote rural sites in the United States.
Perhaps we have seen the light. Through treaty with Russia, successor to the Soviet Union, massive and mutual chemical agent disposal programs started in the first decade of the 21st Century. This week as I drove serenely along I-84 on the shore of the mighty Columbia River from small Hermiston, Oregon toward Portland I once again viewed the hundreds upon hundreds of turf-covered, low-lying dark bunkers buried in the grounds of the Umatilla Army Depot.
If we can believe the forecasts of the US Army Corps of Engineers and the firm with the federal contract for the destruction work, all of the most lethal nerve agents have been destroyed and weapons containing the sulfur mustard compounds are due for total descruction by 2014. So far no leaks, no deaths and no major labor injuries. Similar claims are made for the Russian stockpiles.
A touch of local gallows humor in far eastern Oregon is that that location represents the purest form of democratic freedom of choice. One can select his/her preference ... asphyxiation from the gases at Umatilla or radiation from the residual ground leaching of plutonium at the decommissioned nuclear production complex at Hanford, Washington, twenty miles north.
Onward and upward!
Subject: Gullible and so lead astray!!!
Subject: ....What A Phony....
add me on msn email@example.com
Subject: My Japan
invasion of the Japanese home islands, which was scheduled for November, 1945. One gathers that the script writers reflected government concern that American war fervor might be waning in the wake of Germany's surrender and the devastation
of Japanese cities. The message: the invasion of Japan proper will be a bloody affair, so be ready. It will be like 1000 Iwo Jimas. This fear
is what underlay the decision to drop the atom bombs. It is not hard to understand why.
What's also interesting are the posts. Looks like every right-wing yahoo with a tin foil hat has weighed in.
Subject: My Japan - The Truth You Do Not Want To Face!
Fat Man and Little Boy solved the "Japanese Problem" outlined in this War Bonds Drive Film. There was NO other way to deal with a Demonic and Sadistic Enemy.
While the narrator is a tad corny - the Religoious and Political extremism portrayed in this movie is EXACTLY what the Japanese felt in their hearts. They were SERIOUS about what they fought for.
The Japanese felt that their Emperor was DIVINE and the only true "Son of Heaven" - a sort of God Man. They felt it their honor bound duty to bring by FORCE all of the "inferior races" of the world into total subjection to the "Son of Heaven".
We are facing the same thing today with Radical Islamic Fascism. Like the Japanese of WW2 the Islamic Sadists will DIE to bring about a world Islamic State. They are NOT afraid to die to bring about their world view into existence.
Unfortunately we lack the Testicular Fortitude of our Great Grandparents who dealt with the Japanese in the only means that was effective. It is too bad that our Kenyan President of the USA lacks the guts to NUKE Mecca and Medina.
Subject: realistic and disturbing
Subject: I agree, this is a good movie
Subject: Tokyo Roy
Until 'My Japan', I had never seen an American WWII propaganda film that took this type of approach to shake up the audience. Its clever use of selected footage while listening to the "Japanese" narrator's "Japanese" point of view was designed to promote hatred, boost American enlistment, validate bombing in Japan and increase war funding in one fell swoop.
Then I started reading the posts. While I wasn't shocked as to the volume of posts, I was appalled to see the apparent animosity that a 40s piece was still able to effectively bring to the surface. I observed that the majority of the posters were more interested in berating one another than contributing something pertaining to this film, turning it into a political shouting match. Worse still, I'm not sure some viewers knew the Japanese monologue in 'My Japan' was written by Americans. Pretty sad stuff indeed. Almost as sad as Japanese guy's accent. Apparently he didn't pass YellowFace 101. Didn't he know he was supposed to substitute R's for L's and vice versa instead of using W's? "Kill the Amewicans, Kill the Amewicans..."
I would be interested in knowing how many theaters showed this particular WWII short, and what reaction(s) it provoked.
Subject: It's amazing...
This movie used captured footage from Japan, including pictures of dead babies, massacred prisoners (including one picture that has a decapitated head!), and American POWs who were relentlessly tortured, maimed and killed.
The only thing about this that was remotely cheesy was the Japanese commentator's makeup; the accent could've sounded a bit less Charlie Chan-ish, too.
But it's like a free for all otherwise, this stupid notion that this film is "racist." WHAT is racist about it??
We were at WAR with Japan after Pearl Harbor. The projections of how many americans and japanese civilians would have to die if we island-hopped over YEARS to the Japanese mainland were staggering. Any of these people remotely familiar with the rape of Nanking? The Bataan Death March?
The dopes who think this movie is "racist" are absolutely ignorant of the Japan of the Emperor. They made Islamic terrorists look almost reasonable!
I give the movie five stars for the Japan footage and for how well it put forward its positions that were based in FACT. The vast majority of the info for this movie (which, btw, was a War Bond fundraiser) were TRUE.
There is no other conclusion one could draw, unless one is hopelessly ignorant, or pushing a very predictable political agenda.
Subject: In rgards to the A-bomb...
You can't use rhetoric as Japan did and then claim foul when these women and children are dragged into the fighting.
Subject: ah i get it now
i must admit though, it takes some guts to fly ten billion foot up in the air and drop an A-Bomb on a bunch of children.
the dumbest? now there's a thought.
Subject: Sure thing yapooza
Subject: "They want Peace? But then we dont get to try these babys out..."
Atrocities were being commited all over the globe during this period, yes war is barbaric.
However nobody has the audacity or sheer inhumanity to even attempt defending such events except the blind nationalists of America.
They parrot statistics and talk of hypothetical lives saved as a result of dropping the atomic bombs. Of course any normal person finds such self-righteous justification to be disgusting, immoral and quite pychopathic in nature.
Remember, soldiers sign up to fight and to die for their countries, unarmed women and children do not.
Subject: Preparation for Operation Downfall
Many have called the film racist but compared to some of Capra's work (especially Know Your Enemy-Japan) it is surprisingly even handed. It shows the planned invasion of Japan (Operation Downfall) is not going to be easy.
It compares the Japanese people to the English in that destroying the capital did not kill the country. There is even a scene showing kids training to be soldiers-echoing Hitler's use of 12 year old boys in defense of Berlin. It even talks about the US not willing to pay what it will cost in lives to win the war.
No, the more you view this film the more it becomes obvious that this was intended to prepare the US public for the huge causality rates (1 million on the US side alone) that were expected.
Subject: What is disturbing about this short?
The point of the short was to show that Japan is stronger than most Americans and her allies were thinking at that time. Is Japan not a global power economically and militarily? Japan has the largest military in Asia, yes, including China and Korea.
Don't give in to the easy and tempting trap of calling old films propaganda. Compared with the MTV/Moore/Gore stuff that calls itself documentary, these government shorts are flawless!
BTW, not a month goes by when nationalist black trucks w/ rising sun flags and loudspeakers and imperial uniformed men aren't making a day-long protest at Tokyo or Shinjuku station.
It is no coincidence that the rest of Asia feels no anger toward the U.S. and use of the atomic bomb. It is no coinicidence that each year as Japan mourns its dead in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, that the rest of Asia does not drown out the crying with cries of anger toward Japan. (the western press never reports that part, of course.)
If those who label this as untrue are serious they need to study history A LOT more, and that goes for whoever wrote the caption. Study Bataan where Japanese soldiers practiced katana skills on prisoners for fun, Study Okinawa, where Japanese civilians were forced to commit suicide or face the bayonette of the Japanese military. Study Harbin where Chinese civilians were experimented on, limbs amputated and sewn back on different people or in different places, where animal limbs were sewn on to replace their own, where humans stripped naked and hosed down w/ cold water in sub zero weather then watched as their own limbs, frozen solid, were shattered like glass when 'doctors' struck them with hammers. Study Nanjing, where tens of thousands were 'recruited' to serve as prostitutes, slaves, targets, biological guinnea pigs, Study the Comfort Women of Korea, of China, of Singapore, of the Phillipines, Study how even to this day, November 2, 2007, the more than 10, 000 korean slaves held in Hiroshima who were also killed along with the Japanese are not permitted to have their names listed along with Japanese dead. In fact, no mention of them is permitted within the city limits.
How disturbing is this short now?
None of the silly, half-baked horse hockey like Adhish puts forth in his post can be substantiated in any way, shape or form. At best, it is nothing more than obtuse opinion that is anchored in a psychological longing to be recognized as an authority on something... anything - a "guru" complex. I would suggest that before anyone gets tempted to write such bilge that they first obtain concrete evidence to back up their views... not third-hand hearsay they picked up from MTV or Britney Spears.
The world is what it is. You can lie on your back and kick your feet, scream and cry like a baby and human nature will never change. Those of you who think they are the high voice of right and reason when they talk conspiracy theory and other anti U.S. crap don't realize how cheap words are. Back up your gripes with genuine evidence... and if you can prove your case, have the courage of your convictions and follow it up with REAL action... or keep your teeth closed.
This movie served it's purpose when it was made and there is nothing that can be done about.
Subject: StunnedandAmazed... your narrow-mindedness is appalling...
The Japanese did indeed agree BEFORE the a-bombs were dropping to surrender... on the condition that they could keep their emperor.
The emperor himself was their god, but still just a figurehead. But the U.S. wanted an UNCONDITIONAL surrender... How much would it have cost the U.S. to agree? Not much... in fact, it would have saved them 2 a-bombs and a lot of lives.
The a-bomb was indeed dropped as a means of intimidating the Soviet Union. Truman had just come in as president, and, uninformed about Roosevelt's ongoing funding to the development of the a-bomb, had to be quickly briefed on the project and the implications of its use. Thus, when it came to crunch time, there were several options: demonstrate the bomb to the Japanese in America or in the jungles of Japan, warn the Japanese before using it, attack only military bases, attack civilian centers, use both bombs, use one bomb, etc. Eventually, Truman (the uneducated hick he was) decided to use it. And it did indeed intimidate the Soviet Union. They started to work frantically on developing their own shortly afterwards.
And remember Potsdam, where Truman had just been informed of the success of Trinity? He was bragging to Stalin about it. If that's not intimidation, I don't know what is.
Why wouldn't American industrialists finance Nazis? If they support the enemy secretly, the U.S. has more need to join the war, and the eventual effect is heavy reliance on American industry in the war effort.
But Rockefeller actually supported Nazis because of their euthanasia/sterilization of the elderly campaign.
I haven't heard about the last point, about U.S. leaders knowing about Pearl Harbor before it happened, but it sounds very likely. The U.S. needed an excuse to break out of its isolationist shell and Pearl Harbor was the perfect excuse. After all, wars stimulate rapid industrial growth, as well as medical growth. Penicillin was used copiously during the war, and promoted more research and eventually nobel-prize winning discoveries and inventions related to it.
StunnedandAmazed, you illustrate your obvious lack of knowledge of historiography when you cite simply one source for all of your conservative beliefs, and demonstrate how you allow yourself to be indoctrinated by a single viewpoint. You treat books as propaganda yourself, ironically enough.
All of the facts that AlexJonesLemming stated are compiled from various sources, National Archives, several primary sources and secondary sources, data, declassified CIA documents, etc. In other words, a wide variety of sources.
Subject: Racism in WWII
The Japanese on the other hand felt the were superior to all other races, after all they were the only people on the planet who had a living deity for a ruler.
The Japanese military actually made a conscious decision indoctrinate their troops in this way as a way after WWI. During their military expansion between the wars they saw this as the best way to maintain the very highest level of discipline and obedience. There was the Emperor, then their officers, then their NCOs then the enlisted men. It was not at all unusual for an NCO to beat an enlisted man viciously for even very minor infractions. All Non-Japanese persons were lower in the pecking order than the average Japanese soldier, so they felt perfectly justified do what ever they wanted to with them without a thought of remorse.
The same level of racial hatred existed on the eastern front in Europe as well.
There is no doubt that we backed Japan in a corner with our embargo of oil and steel. They did not even have the resources to run a peace time economy, much less feed a massive war machine, but we were not willing to accept their occupation of China and Manchuria, and they felt like we were trying to deny the right of Asians to govern Asia.
It still amazes me though; 62 years after the war ended how we can all look at, and study the history of that conflict and come up with so many different conclusions to the whys and wherefores of what took place and where is right and wrong?
I have a book to recommend to any of you who would care to read it. It’s called Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire by Richard B. Frank. It’s an analysis of the last 6 month of the Pacific war.
As for me, my opinion is that if we had not dropped the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki there would not be much of a Japanese people left. If the US had had to invade Japan and fight the type of battles that we fought on Peleliu, Iwo Jima and Okinawa there would have been wholesale slaughter of the Japanese people and the ones that were not killed by US weapons would have most likely fallen victim to the starvation.
I highly recommend this book to you especially AlexJonesLemming. I have no idea where you got your facts, but I doubt any of it would hold up to scrutiny.
Subject: We never learn...
Subject: Very Interesting Piece of History
Subject: More History
But facts behind the war:
1. The Japanese WERE 90% thru negotiations for peace. They had had several cities scorched and only wanted to keep their symbolic Emperor. A *nearly* unconditional surrender. If totally unconditional was so important, they probably would have gone there ... no choice.
2. The A-bomb was dropped as a psyop against Russia, and like all wars, against ALL of us, against Americans too.
3. US Elite ruling class HEAVILY financed Hitler, to the point that the National Socialists would never have come to power without the help and direction of Rockefeller, et. al. This et. al. includes people like Allen Dulles, Under Sec of State at one point, NY investment attorney, and future CIA director. It also includes one of his partners, George Herbert Walker, and Walker's son-in-law Prescott Bush in the role of "go-fer" for a Nazi money-laundering operation.
4. US leaders ABSOLUTELY KNEW about the pending Japanese attack, down to the hour. This is not a Left Wing fantasy. As a matter of fact, I first heard it on a Libertarian talk show, PhilipDru, by a friendly Birchite, G. Edward Griffin.
Subject: The war against Japan from the US perspective
Most poeple will judge the film to be either racist/propagandist or the other extreme of absolutely correct in portrayal of the Japanese war machine. I am forced to agree that both sides are probably correct from my viewpoint.
The Japanese treated all the peoples that they conquered brutally (e.g. Rape of Nanking, comfort women, hideous biological experiments on prisoners of war and innocent civilians, and general rape, mutilation, humiliation and cannabilism). Most of this are documented by various organisations but ware generally ignored by Westerners. On the other hand, in order to fight such evil (at the time), usually the protagonist (in this case, the US) would have to resort to levels at least approaching that evil (internment camps/Japanese as subhumans: "...the Jap is a short myophic, buck-toothed runt...")
This sort of conduct perhaps was necessary to win the war but should not be looked upon as either savory or as an ideal. This film was like the war should perhaps be viewed as an necessary evil.
Subject: Interesting Snap-shot
What I thought was interesting was the white guy pretending to be a smarmy Japanese antagonist. Similar to the Tokyo Rose character the Japanese used to try and de-moralize our troops in the field. I thought the presentation was humorous.
Another point, off topic, that I would like to bring up is this:
Every post I read in this thread, posted by self-proclaimed mavens of intellect, consistently use the same, weak, ad homonym tactic by using words i.e., red state, redneck, hillbilly, neo-con, etc., to convey some kind of all-knowing superiority over those of us that do not fall within their political or ideological view.
Their talking points all seem to be parroted from one person to the other with no real original thought, offered solution, or useful information.
And these people profess to be "progressive?"
Food for thought.
Subject: Where would I begin...
Rather than make people cringe at posting such a long story, I'll try to make a few points only...
I'll preface this by making my position clear: I have no side, I have friend in both the US and Japan and would hold myself to be one of the few who is really non-partisan in this case.
1. This was propoganda and people have to see it for what it is. Its also made a long time ago! You'd think people would know this since its dated, but, from some of the comments I begin to wonder. Every body did this kind of stuff. The British made some equally bad stuff about Germans, and vice versa, in both WW's. [see also point 3]
2. World perceptions of Japan.
Nowadays we see Japan as a big economy. According to usual measures it was the second largest until Europe started calling itself a single economy and took 1st place from the US. Back then, despite all that had happened, most people including governments perceived Japan as no more threat than say Thailand or Fiji. I believe this was a very big problem for the American government of the day... hence this particular film. We often like to "bag" american governments for their failure to perceive or learn from history but, for once, they got it right, in that sense. Its interesting to note that earlier in 1904 another then "self proclimed" world leader made the same mistake. I'm not going to say who [see point 4] but, they thought they'd boost citizen morale by kicking ass on this "little pretender" only to get their own kicked instead. Suffice to say that within less than two decades those leaders were all gone and mostly executed [that might give it away].
3. The ultimate question about the nature of war.
This is the real question in fact and it is probably the explanation as to why most comments and indeed reviewers themselves appear polarized. Lets look at history again. Not that much earlier, in historical terms, European wars were fought to rules. I mean can you believe all these people lining up to fight as if it was a game, all waiting for the agreed time to start! At some point war took a change and peple realized that to lose meant more than just losing a fight. WWI introduced the masses to some appalling modern war things, not the least because it was so much in the new media. Anyway, to get to the point before I make this a min-essay... is anything justified in war since losing can mean losing more than just a bit of territory? If not, where DO we draw the line? AS I said before, I beleive this is what polarizes opinions and people.
4. For goodness sake people, if you dont have any hitorical knowledge, do some reading before posting knee-jerk reactions! It would also help to think first too! :) There are so many ridiculous comments here I would need pages to address them all.
5. Okay I'll try to stop with this one.
One of the worst errors on both sides is the conclusion that the acts of goverments, whoevers, reflects the acts, ideas, thoughts... etc of the people. With all the acces we have to knowledge nowadays which people then did not, you would think we would know better than to still believe that nonsense. For example, and this is just an example I'm not taking sides as it applies equally to all, the remarks about the Japanese PEOPLE are inane. Back then they had very little say in what was done for both reasons of law [fear of arrest] and perception [brainwashing by propoganda and limited access to knowledge]. Even today, the government there continues to edit history so most ordinary people dont even know a fraction of what we know about the historical events. Again I could do another essay on that one but I wont.
I better stop here or I'm gonna need a blog for this subject, haha!
Subject: What great stuff...
But, as a look back, its totally fascinating.
Figures the dumb lib below would equate it to conservatism. They make anything into a political statement.
Though this guy is obviously an American, and probably white, it's a great play on the Japanese, and an actual view point of many non-Americans at the time. From what we portrayed abroad, most of the world thought Americans were sluggish, ignorant playboys, because those who visited abroad were rich boys with little drive. In the American backbone were the earnest, moral, hard working average Joe that rolled over on europe and Asia with the help of the American industrialist. We were then, as always, very under estimated. An understandable perception, though.
This film makes no pretense, it states what it is up front - a government film about how Japanese thought of us. And it was true. Just read histories about Japan in the war. Sure, not all thought it, but it was the public perception at the time. So while propaganda, it isn't that far off. I've seen far worse.
Subject: Sounds A Lot Like Conservative Americans Today
I think the dead babies, executions, headless torso shots mixed in with White American soldiers who lost limbs was especially effective. So was the "We live & dedicate our lives to kill Americans" crap. Our government today has painted the entire Middle-East as terrorists who live to kill Americans. Ain't it funny how some things never change?
For those who didn't quite catch the racism in this, what exactly were you hoping for? Racial slurs and such? I guess you were really disappointed then.
As a bleeding-heart liberal, I propose we round up all the cons, drop them off on a deserted island somewhere with boxes full of guns and bibles. We'll check back in a couple years to see if there are any survivors left.
Subject: Good footage. Bad reviews.
Subject: McCarthy Was Trash
Subject: One of the better War Films - My Japan
Subject: Beware Governments
Like this and many other propaganda films, the lesson to be learned here is that all government propaganda should be looked at as suspect. The Japanese government is guilty of duping its own people during WWII for the benefit of those in power. Even now the Japanese government is trying to suppress history by editing textbooks and striking historical records.
We Americans should consider this and look at our own government with equal skepticism.
This is why a free and independent press is essential to democracy and human rights. Someone needs to be able to watch over government action without fear of retribution or starvation. Support your independent news sources.
Subject: An interesting method of war propaganda
A few things I would like to point out:
1. This was a great example ofgyellow-face.h Just as it was used in minstrelsy and blackface, a common tactic of Hollywood in the 40s and 50fs was to use white actors painted up and trained togsound Asian. This was done for many reasons, sometimes it was because many studios/crews/actors refused to work with minorities, or sometimes they were worried about the audience reaction. My question is, since this was claimed to begcaptured Japanese footageh and a realgview of what they think,h why didn't they use an actual Asian actor? There had to have been an Asian in America who disliked the Japanese and was willing to do it. It would have added a much deeper level of authenticity to drive the point home. Any thoughts on what their motivation to use a Caucasian actor might have been?
2. This is a departure from the common propaganda tactic of the time, including strategies still used today by the US and other countries. Usually the method isglook at these inhuman monsters, they savage and mindless.h This reel takes a very different strategy. It's more of a taunt than anything. To me it sounds likeglook how capable and ready we Japanese are. Just try and fight us.h I personally think they used this strategy because the goal was to sell war bonds and not recruit fighters. They needed to make the Japanese look perfectly capable to establish that we were not being thegpolice of the world,h but that the Japanese were fighting to win, and thus the public needs to buy war bonds to counter. Anyone else have any ideas about why they took this route?
3. On the subject of making Japan look perfectly capable, they also made the country itself look perfectly functional and civilized (at least domestically.) Especially in anti-German propaganda, the imagery usually made the enemy country look like an establishing shot of George Orwellfs 1984. Japan was under an authoritarian government at the time, but they didnft really depict the nation as internally very bad, or at least not as bad as the Germans. Why do you suppose that is?
These are what caught my attention. I'm not even going to touch on who did what then or now. My interests are purely in the how and why of media and propaganda. This piece is very atypical for the time, both in propaganda method and a little bit in its production. I highly recommend this to anyone who has an interest in American propaganda.
Subject: Not as good as I thought it would be
Subject: Hardly Racist
In fact, I have trouble seeing how this is called racist at all. Keep in mind a couple of things. First, the government's motivation to appeal to the public so was a genuine fear and appal of the Japanese government and citizenry. This is all after a 10+ year pattern of terrible attrocities, conquest, and horrifying POW treatment. While the film can certainly not speak for every man, woman, and child that lived in Japan, its implication that /all/ citizens work so hard and hate Americans so much is hyperbole, not racism. Many object to the choice of narrator. Remember that cinema at this early point didn't care so much for accurate casting. It wasn't uncommon for Italians to play Arabs and put on similarly cheesey accents. The context and message make it clear that this is a scripted event. The choice was considered "close enough" at the time, and demonstrates historical trends, not racial bigotry. The film also makes no presumption or statement upon the attitudes, feelings, or actions of those of Japanese descent living in America.
That said, I thought this was an interesting film. Some points were obviously exagerated for influence, and I wonder how they must have seemed to a contemporary viewer. There are a few disturbing frames, such as execution shots and decapitated heads. The line about Japanese waiting for hours in line to buy war bonds came off as a bit heavy handed.
Finally, I must address the review that stated that though the Japanese government commanded cruelty and genocide, the true crime is for us to submit to a hasty generalization of the Japanese. I'm forced to disagree; the true crime is genocide. I hope this was fecetious.
Subject: Very Interesting
It's good to read some of these comments below and be reminded of why Dubya got back into office. The fact that these eggheads still exist just stuns me. Out there in the nowhere lands of the red states, where humans can't congregate in numbers large enough to form a genuine understanding of world events, these backwoods sentiments still rule... thanks for the reminder.
Subject: So much to be learnt from the past...
As a South African, Im well aware of race-based propaganda as its insidious use under Apartheid South Africa was frequent and used to great effect against black South Africans, and to entrench stereotypes amongst the various ethnic groups.
Subject: it works
Propaganda can only be regarded as such.
Subject: All you need to know about the Japanese (aka the enemy)
Hey isnt that the bridge that Monet painted, how they moved it from France to Japan I'd like to know.
The very mountains of the earth itself command all Japanese to rule. I wonder why they havent yet
The only part that made me laugh from cheesiness was the perky fanfare playing encouraging you to buy war bonds after the film has been scaring you to death.
People watching this with closed eyes, or even using it as an excuse for their own prejudices are sadly ignorant of the truths this film portrays of some of the most uncertain hours of WWII. While we are now allies with Japan, back then they were a feared enemy. Pick up a history book and you'll find the same sentiments echoed, only without the goofy narration to convince today's viewers that it was an exaggerated propaganda piece. Imperial Japan was a fearsome force during WWII, and today even the Japanese have openly denounced their government at the time (though sadly they have yet to apologize for their actions in Asia.)
The film tells you "This is what ALL Japanese think." An exaggeration, yes. But so iron-handed was their Imperial government that it didn't matter what it's people thought - even their own religion was part of the state. To them, it wasn't the emperor, but the kami making the decrees (part of the reason why so many Japanese are now atheists).
Yes, the US has comitted atrocities in wars. That does not mean other countries get a free pass in history because they give us anime and pocky. The world must examined with realistic eyes - both the positives and the darkest parts of history.
Subject: Not as racist as advertised
This film was clearly intended to drum up confidence for what was then thought to be an almost certain bloody battle on mainland Japan. There's no hint of the Manhattan Project here, folks. And who knows how bloody and totally destructive such an invasion would have been, on both sides. Thankfully, we never had to find out.
I find it amusing (and a source of consternation) that so many people here find the horrible, realistic war images shown here racist and too violent or whatever, yet they also decry it whenever propaganda films pretty up war into a big patriotic jingoistic happy fun time of glory. And these terrible images may well have played out in the case that the invasion had gone forward. And the film is almost prophetic in its vision of asymmetric and guerilla warfare ("...to dig millions of us out of caves, gullies, buildings, mountains") that played out in Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq in the decades that followed.
Folks, just lower the gain on your hypersensitivity meters for a little bit when you watch it. Racist? Sure, it's a war film. Propaganda? You bet -- that's what it was designed to be. But actually more honest than most I've seen, willing to tell its intended audience what could have well happened without the a-bomb.
Subject: the definitive propaganda film
Subject: must see
Subject: Nobody Wins In War
Subject: Oh.....Welcome to Mai Japan....
Subject: Remember the rape of Nanking
Subject: Remember the rape of Nanking
Subject: please spare us your redneck sentiments
also you seem to forget the 522nd field artillery battalion.
you complain about liberal americabashers yet you are the prime cause for such sentiments.
historian? dont make me laugh.
Subject: America Hating Libs have made it here, too.....
Read kokutai no hongi, shimmin no michi or any other militarist Japanese propoganda.
(I agree though, the comments directed towards Americans in this film are indeed quite racist.)
Subject: Turning Japanese
Subject: cold-blooded hindsight
Subject: Review of the Reviews
Now for a little history lesson.
For 20 years the people of America had been watching the "Japs" ("Japs" is to "Japaneese" what "Nazi" is to "German.") rape and pillage their way across Asia. Then while still at "peace" with the US they wipped out our entire Pacific Fleet leaving the West Coast undefended.
These people were scared. Were their little girls to be next to raped with a "Jap" bayonnette? Were their sons and brothers to be executed? Their Grandparents used for target practice? It had happened all across Asia and now they were headed to the US. Those people were scared beyond anything you can even imagine. Don't believe me? See: http://www.tribo.org/nanking/ and remember the Japaneese people have NEVER even though about apologizing for anything their troops did.
If you can get beyond the PC "America is evil" point of view for just a few minutes. Look at the film again through their eyes.
My point is not that this film is right, clearly there are many flaws and outright errors in the facts, fears and conclusions. My point is that unless welearn something about our own flaws, the film has taught us nothing.
B.T.W. One of my best friends growing up was half Japaneese. I have the greatest respect for good people regardless of their nationality and no respect for anyone who thinks they are better or more deserving than anyone else.
Subject: must see
Subject: Love Japan They love you!!
I love anything with pshyclogical mind control. It is the same now as it was then. I mean it is humorous to see people 60 years later on this site were convinced by this film. Like I have always said experence and education is the key.
Just remember next time you put the Japanese down, you might as well pitch your Car and throw your TV out the window. Most modern day American companies use Japanese techonlogy. Look at cars. Your Ford Focus is modeled in mind with the ever so popular Japanese lines. Compact, using as little as possible to get the most horsepower.
I have a lot of respect for these people. I spent a whole year with one living in my house. She was not only cute, innocent and cartoon loving girl. But she was one of the most intelligent and hard working persons I have ever met. I think she was a great influence on me. I never noticed how lazy I was till I lived with a Japanese girl.
Subject: Those Crazy Japs
Having said that, this is one of the most amazing examples of propaganda I've ever seen, and must have had people crapping their pants in 1945.
Equally amazing are the reactions in this forum. It's so easy to watch these films and think that people must have been incredibly unsophisticated to take them seriously. And here we are in 2004 with people supporting an American propaganda film about Japanese propaganda films as an accurate depiction of the Japanese? Huh?
It just shows how susceptible we ALL are to manipulation. Yes, it's more subtle now, but in 50 or 60 years, it'll be just as laughable.
See you in hell...
Subject: This is heartbreaking...
I find it depressing; I thought we had learnt from the errors of our history's darkest age. But it seems not.
Subject: YES Mr Bigshot
so i wont mention anythign about america killing BBC employees.
And as for the "we crushed" them, u crushed them using einsteins technology, and to clear up, you werent the first to start producing it, a russian theorist called azahr started work on the first a bomb but it was a 24k bomb and america used a 4k bomb, which left russia witha 24k bomb to dispose of. they dropped it in the south pacific and it exploded with enough force to destroy most of scotland and leave radiation in britan. the aircraft barely survived the test.
if america is "THE most powerful country in the world and that is the bottom line." why didnt u just send the nation to storm japan and take it on foot surely the most powerfull army in the world could do something like that.
we were being bombarded with shells the size of minis by sie germans, it was us on the front line, sure u sent backup but it wasnt ur country being stomped.you had it easy in world war 2 in my opinion and that my fired has made you weak, you think your amazing but really ur just pathetic weak minded obese semi human beings !!!
its people like you that make me sick you think youve done all the hard work when you did jack, its liek when u play games online liek CS for example you see a guy and are involved ina massive gun fight with him, and you both run out of ammo, and ur frantically trying to stab each other with ur knives, you say to ur team " sweet one more stab and heas dead" and some punk jumps round the corner and blows him away witha shotgun. GUTTED all that hard work and he gets the glory. not even a "fair play to you tom, you did well" or anything, its "sweet im the best i kick all ur asses" complete and utter son of a mother of a daughter of a unvcle of a mother of a son of a beech.
"Well, I say no GOOK comes even close to the strongest or even the weakest American for that matter" yeah the strongest american must be able to lift at least 20 burgers in one sitting i rekon.
PHWOOR can u feel the power?
i must apologise for my poor spelling and grammar.
"America are THE most powerful country in the world and that is the bottom line. "
who told you that ??
Subject: How Naiive
Your like the super sub who comes on scores a goal and thinks he's the shiznay!!!!
Firstly get a grip on reality, you might be the strongest nation in the world but that gives you the greatest weakness. 11:09:01 ring any bells? please!
Secondly yes you did destroy japan but that nabled them to retart their economy and now their share in the worlds market is now even bigger than if you didn't drop the two atom bombs on then, (well done but that was Einstein's invention who isn't american you'll be "surprised" to know).
And finally if your army is soooooo immense, could you do me a favour and tell them to shoot properly and at the right people.... JACKASS!!!
->kid lewis<- English!!! ;)
Subject: The bottom line is.....
If the makers of this film could see the aftermath of what America did to Japan...I don't think they would have made such a silly attempt to scare us.
If they were to see the aftermath of our what our hardware did to their country. They would have made a film, saying we surrender, we don't want any problems with such a powerful country such as America.
Let us live and please don't drop the bomb on us. They would be begging for mercy, not talking high and mighty like the narrator of this film.
We are THE most powerful country in the world and that is the bottom line. We don't need to do such movies. Because, the whole world knows that America is unbeatable in a war like WW2.
Being they called us this and that...Well, I say no GOOK comes even close to the strongest or even the weakest American for that matter. Sure, they are hard workers. That is because, America gave them something to work for. Otherwise, they would de destitute.
Subject: Politically correct film, for its time
Subject: Plz... what crappy propagnda
-Nukes to nagasaki & Hiroshima
-Japanese mass violence in Nankig
-Russian Attack to Finland & mass violence in Berlin
This is just some examples of what happened in WW2.
so not only japanese were "bad"
Subject: Who cares if it's racist?
Subject: Turning Japanese.. Turning Japanese.. I really think so..
Subject: Not Racist?
Maybe Japan did use chemical weapons against China. Maybe Germany used chemical weapons against the Allies in WW1. Maybe Great Britain built concentration camps during the Boer War. Maybe the United States nuked 2 Japanese cities chock full of civilians. If you want to get in an atrocity contest, I think the US is the current recordholder.
Also of interest: A Threat to Democracy
Subject: Psychology 101
Subject: A must see........
Subject: Finally...unbleached history
I agree with Ken Smith's speculation that at least part of the purpose of this film was to justify the use of nuclear weapons on Japan.
For those of you who believe this film to be an accurate or realistic protrayal of Japanese attitudes about the war, I suggest watching "The Grave of the Fireflies", an animated film created by a Japanese civilian who watched his little sister starve to death in the waning days of World War II.
Subject: My Japan - enough to terrify Frank Capra
Subject: Super film...clips you usually don't see
Subject: Fair ~ generous
If anything, My Japan is a watered down version of Japanese WWII propaganda. Its been watered down for the initiated pallet of the 1945 American public. All of the precepts described in My Japan were borrowed straight from Japanese war propaganda. The majority of film footage used was shot by Japanese war propagandists and/or historians.
I urge you to watch My Japan with an open mind. Watch My Japan without superstition, fear, or jealousy. If you can do that, Ken Smiths review below will sound like the ratings of a rabid, unwashed flag burner (although Im sure hes advanced in years enough to be well beyond that phase of his life). If you can watch My Japan and still not see the film as fair and balanced, I urge you to study any Japanese WWII propaganda you can find and study as many Japanese cultural references as you can get your hands on.
Subject: Weird Little Host
Fugi-yama (Mt. Fugi): It should be fu-gi-ya-ma not fu-ga-ma.
Tokyo: Should be To-kyo not To-ki-yo
Osaka: Should be O-sa-ka not Osa-ka
Other then that the pictures of the sevored heads and burning bodies was really disturbing.
Subject: Brain Washed
Subject: History Repeats itself time and time again...
Overall: A must keep for your children and theirs and so on.. I say:" Let's go to war when Bushy is in the front and so are his two daughters, that way I know we are going to fight.. This ain't no phreaki' operation HS [Human Shield]
Also view "Duck and Cover"..
Subject: My Japan
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ****. Weirdness: *****. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****. Also available on Americans in War.